Mother's Day Features
The Birthday of America
This year marks 235 years since our Founding Fathers gave us our National Birth Certificate. We continue to be the longest on-going Constitutional Republic in the history of the world. Blessings such as these are not by chance or accidental. They are blessings of God.
On July 2, 1776, Congress voted to approve a complete separation from Great Britain. Two days afterwards July 4th the early draft of the Declaration of Independence was signed, albeit by only two individuals at that time: John Hancock, President of Congress, and Charles Thompson, Secretary of Congress. Four days later, on July 8, members of Congress took that document and read it aloud from the steps of Independence Hall, proclaiming it to the city of Philadelphia, after which the Liberty Bell was rung. The inscription around the top of that bell, Leviticus 25:10, was most appropriate for the occasion: Proclaim liberty throughout the land and to all the inhabitants thereof.
What was the basis of American Independence? John Adams said, The general principles on which the Fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. Perhaps the clearest identification of the spirit of the American Revolution was given by John Adams in a letter to Abigail the day after Congress approved the Declaration. He wrote her two letters on that day; the first was short and concise, jubilant that the Declaration had been approved. The second was much longer and more pensive, giving serious consideration to what had been done that day. Adams cautiously noted: This day will be the most memorable epic in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival.
It is amazing that on the very day they approved the Declaration, Adams was already foreseeing that their actions would be celebrated by future generations. Adams contemplated whether it would be proper to hold such celebrations, but then concluded that the day should be commemorated but in a particular manner and with a specific spirit. As he told Abigail, It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.
In 1837, when he was 69 years old, Adams delivered a Fourth of July speech at Newburyport, Massachusetts. He began that address with a question, Why is it, friends and fellow citizens, that you are here assembled? Why is it that entering on the 62nd year of our national existence you have honored [me] with an invitation to address you...?
The answer was easy: they had asked him to address them because he was old enough to remember what went on; they wanted an eye-witness to tell them of it! He next asked them: Why is it that, next to the birthday of the Savior of the world, your most joyous and most venerated festival returns on this day [the Fourth of July]?
Note his answer. Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the Gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first
organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer's mission upon earth? That it laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity?
According to John Quincy Adams, Christmas and the Fourth of July were intrinsically connected. On the Fourth of July, the Founders simply took the precepts of Christ who came into the world through His birth (Christmas) and incorporated those principles into civil government.
The spiritual emphasis manifested so often by the Americans during the Revolution caused one Crown-appointed British governor to write to Great Britain complaining that, If you ask an American who is his master, he'll tell you he has none. And he has no governor but Jesus Christ.
Letters like this, and sermons like those preached by the Reverend Peter Powers (Jesus Christ the King), gave rise to a motto of the American Revolution which was directed against King George III who regularly violated the laws of nature and of nature's God. The motto was very simple and very direct: No King but King Jesus!
Preserving American liberty depends first upon our understanding the foundations on which this great country was built and then preserving the principles on which it was founded. Let's not let the purpose for which we were established be forgotten. The Founding Fathers have passed us a torch; let's not let it go out.
Editors Note: To learn more about the quest for our freedom, read WallBuilder resources such as Lives of the Signers, Wives of the Signers (both reprints); or view one of their video's, The Spirit of the American Revolution; or listen to the stories recounted by David Barton in America's Birthday. These, and many more, are available from WallBuilders. To order or request a FREE catalog, call toll-free 800-873-2845; or you may write to them at P.O. Box 397, Aledo, TX, 76008.